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tv   CBS Evening News With Katie Couric  CBS  May 20, 2010 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT

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do you have anything to say? >> yeah, we'll talk about that heat tomorrow. and some folks will complain about it. the sunshine, 85 tomorrow and some showers over the weekend. but again, not a washout. you'll be able to cook out and do the grass and the gardening. you'll be okay. >> so you'll be out there for the grass and the garden? >> yes. >> all right, that's it for 9news now at six. stay with wusa9.com for the cbs evening news. next at 7, derek will see you for our area's only local newscast and tomorrow morning, get started real early at 4:25 a.m. don't forget, wusa9.com is always on. have a great night. from cbs news world headquarters in new york, this is the "cbs evening news" with katie couric. >> couric: good evening, everyone. it happened one month ago tonight, the oil rig explosion that led to the biggest spill in at least two decades.
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and today the obama administration blasted b.p. for not keeping the government and the pub informed. in a letter to the company's c.e.o., homeland security secretary janet napolitano says b.p.'s efforts have "fallen short in their scope and effectiveness." exhibit a, this picture from a live undersea camera feed that b.p. finally made available today. it shows oil is still spewing into the gulf of mexico, a lot more than the company had admitted. by even the most conservative estimate, more than six million gallons have already poured into the gulf. sharyl attkisson begins our coverage tonight from capitol hill and, sharyl, b.p. had no choice but to admit this leak was much bigger than what they've been saying. >> reporter: the timing was probably partly due to the fact that the public today would be getting its first extensionive look at the leak. ours were the first cameras to see b.p.'s live undersea feed.
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this feed was provided to congressman ed markey. >> i think b.p. has known the scope of the problem all along. >> reporter: b.p. also looped in two senators who have been after the video for ten days, barbara boxer and bill nelson. >> how hard was it? it was exceptionally hard. it took two committees and two u.s. senators to finally get them to produce it. >> reporter: the disturbing pictures leave nothing to imagination. they show in realtime the thousands upon thousands of gallons of oil gushing into the gulf unabated. the black tube with stripes is the straw-like device now siphoning off 5,000 barrels a day, but look how much isn't being collected. the white skinny tube is what was, until midnight, injecting chemicals into the plume to break up the oil. under new orders from the e.p.a. b.p. now has to switch to less toxic chemicals. this video, obtained exclusively by cbs news, shows a light-colored cloud which could be disperse zant mixing with the oil may 2.
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b.p. has already used 655,000 gallons of the toxic disperse zants. congress has questioned why b.p. chose these chemicals, bought from a company where a former b.p. executive sits on the board. now the three members of congress who finally have the video are working to get it into the hands of experts who make k make sense of it. >> we need objective parties to have access to this information. >> reporter: this clip shows a robot arm working to prevent a leak two days after the explosion. two days later, the coast guard confirmed leaking had begun. on may 3, a robot arm works painfully without success on a gushing pipe. purdue's steve whorlly looked at the live feed for us today and continues to estimate up to four million gallons a day has been gushing from two leaks. >> by watching the oil come out of the riser tube on the live feed, there's still a substantial amount of oil discharging into the gulf of mexico. >> reporter: the members of congress who saw the video accuse b.p. of trying to hide
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the truth. >> b.p. has lost all correct. >> reporter: if the purdue scientist is correct, katie, this leak in just three days surpassed thatover of the exxon "valdez" in 1989. >> couric: sharyl, do you think b.p. could face criminal charges as a result of all this? >> well, that's the possibility that some senators think because eight of them have asked for a criminal investigation. they've talked to the u.s. attorney general. they want to know about the circumstances surrounding the permit of b.p. to drill here. b.p. was only granted the permit after assuring they had safety precautions in place and that a leak like this would never happen. katie? >> couric: all right. sharyl attkisson reporting from capitol hill tonight. thank you, sharyl. late this afternoon, i spoke with congressman markey who told me the spill has left an unknown number of giant mushroom clouds of oil lurking beneath the surface. meanwhile, above the surface, some fishermen are in a race against time. mark strassmann is in venice, louisiana, tonight.
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mark, what's the latest from there? >> reporter: katie, this is part of today's catch, a hundred pounds sacks of oysters but these guys unloading them will head home tonight wondering if they still have work again tomorrow. with heavy oil now hitting louisiana's coast, jeff is grabing what he can while he can. he's a fourth-generation oyster fisherman and scared. literally any day now, he says, b.p.'s oil could put him out of business. >> getting up early, coming in late because at any day we could be shut down. >> reporter: it's not just the oyster fishermen now in a race against the clock. along louisiana's coast, so many people now believe an oil disaster on shore is a matter not of if but when. >> we're under attack. >> reporter: frustration, even anger, is surging here like the spill. in grand aisle, louisiana, oil-blacked beaches for the first time today. the state's first residential area hit by the oil, like almost 50 miles of louisiana's
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shireline. off elmer's island, oil hit a sand barrier built as protection within the last two weeks. state and local officials want 40 more of them built but complain about washington's red tape. >> we want them to get off their butts-- excuse my french-- i'm telling you, you've got to give us a permit. >> reporter: a month ago today the deep water horizon burst into flames. its aftermath now threatens the water janet has fished for 50 years. >> it's just devastating. it's heart breaking is what it is. >> reporter: three states away from here florida is going to open its oyster season tomorrow, 11 days early. oystermen are also nervous there that the powerful gulf currents are going to start pushing the spill their way. katie? >> couric: mark strassmann, mark thanks very much. in the future, oil spills may be cleaned up or averted with the help of a scientific breakthrough announced today. it's called a synthetic cell. this single-cell bacterium is powered by man-made d.n.a. that was assembled in a lab. someday, scientists hope cells
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like that will make up designer organisms that can be programed to do specific tasks like creating new biofuels or breaking down oil-- which would come in handy about now. meanwhile, there's breaking news tonight in washington, the director of national intelligence, dennis blare, is resigning. chip reid is at the white house. chip, it's been a bumpy tenure for admiral blair. >> it has, katie. this is not a terribly big surprise. you may recall after the attempted christmas day bombing by umar farouk abdulmutallab, the so-called underwear bomber, blair came in for a lot of criticism. and the last straw came this week when congress issued a report severely criticizing the intelligence community for failing to connect the dots in that case. this, though, has been in the works for quite a while. the white house says they have interviewed a number of candidates already officially he will resign tomorrow. katie? >> couric: chip reid, chip, thanks very much. now to a story our investigative team broke lastfall. rapists all across the country are getting away with their
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crime because tens of thousands of rape kits are never tested. the issue reached capitol hill today and, as our chief investigative correspondent armen keteyian tells us, the outrage was loud and clear. >> reporter: the star of today's hearing turned out to be the central figure in our rape kit investigation, valerie neumann. >> i remember telling him over and over again "no, no." >> reporter: neumann testified how her 21st birthday ended in rape. one nightmare followed by another. >> what was perhaps the hardest is that my case was closed without my rape kit being tested. >> reporter: the reason: a judgment call by this local prosecutor involving cost and the fact that alcohol was involved. reasons that only served to inflame the subcommittee. particularly new york congressman anthony weiner, who raked the prosecutor in the case over the coals. >> if he doesn't think he can win the case with a witness and a rape kit, then i don't know how you make yourself a prosecutor. >> reporter: the congressman was so irate he made this remarkable
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offer. >> if it's for wont of a thousand bucks, i think among my colleagues here on this panel we'll raise the money. >> as an example of the recent cbs news report... >> reporter: it was back in november cbs news first shined a light on this staggering number. more than 20,000 untested rape kits nationwide. never sent to crime labs. plus another 6,000 in crime labs waiting months, even years, to be tested. >> when we talk to victims they're incredibly disillusioned with the criminal justice system. >> reporter: actress mariska hargitay who flames a sex crimes detective on television's "law and order: s.v.u." also testified. offering emotional evidence of how in real life so many rape victims have reached out to her for help. >> sorry. i remember my breath going out of me for the very first time when the first letter came, and i've gotten thousands like it since. >> reporter: turning hargitay into an advocate for breaking the backlog in untested kits.
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>> they must be tested. we are letting... we are consciously letting criminals walk again. >> reporter: but maybe not so fast. cbs news has learned the justice department recently called together a group of experts from across the country to better deal with this problem. katie? >> couric: armen keteyian. armen, thank you so much. in other news, there's a disturbing development in the war in afghanistan. national security correspondent david martin has learned american soldiers are being accused of murdering afghan villagers. david, tell us what happened. >> well, katie, it happened near kandahar where u.s. troops are gearing up for the most important operation of the war. members of a squad of about ten american soldiers are under investigation for deliberately killing at least three local villagers who had angered them. according to the allegation, this is not a case of civilians being mistaken for taliban, not a one-time moment of rage. it happened on different
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occasions over the past several months. the squad leader, a sergeant, is said to have done the shooting. in addition, members of the squad are accused of smoking hash. charges could be brought against the soldiers as early as next week. katie? >> couric: david martin at the pentagon tonight. thank you. in sports news, it was long suspected, today he admitted it. disgraced tour de france winner floyd landis said he did use performance-enhancing drugs-- but he didn't stop there. he said lance armstrong helped him learn how to do it. more now from ben tracy. >> a huge group of riders. >> reporter: it was not a good day for lance armstrong. he crashed during the tour of california just hours after his former teammate, floyd landis, admitted to the world that he cheated. landis claims armstrong did, too. >> the whole reason i'm doing any of this is because i want to clear my conscience. i don't want to lie to anybody anymore, including my mom. >> reporter: than disalways denied doping, even after being
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found guilty and stripped of his 2006 tour de france title. >> he's been known to say "when i feel like i have nothing more to lose, i'll bring the whole system down." >> reporter: landis says his doping began in 2002 when he joined armstrong's team. landis admits to using the blood boosting drug e.p.o., testosterone, human growth hormone and blood transfusions to boost oxygen. in an e-mail to cycling officials, landis reportedly alleges his blood was once extracted at armstrong's apartment in spain, stored in a refrigerator alongside bags of armstrong's blood. landis also alleges that after one stage of the 2004 tour de france, the team got off their bikes and on their bus where they eached received blood transfusions along the side of the road. today armstrong said landis has no credibility. >> he's got no proof. it's his word versus ours. it's a bunch of bull [no audio]. >> reporter: armstrong, a seven-time tour de france winner has battled doping allegations for years but never tested positive. dr. dan cat lynn has tested both
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armstrong and landis. he hopes the doping era is ending. >> cycling has done a huge job in cleaning itself up in the last two or three years. >> reporter: but these new allegations still have the cycling world spinning. ben tracy, cbs news, los angeles. >> couric: now to wall street where a new wave of fear hit the stock market. the dow today plunged 376 points or more than 3.5%, which means it's time check in with anthony mason. anthony? >> reporter: it was the market's worst drop in more than a year. how bad was it? well, almost no one was immune. of the 500 stocks in the s&p index, 497 went down today. stocks have now fallen below the flash crash levels we hit a week ago. the dow, s&p, and nasdaq are all off 10% or more from their highs back in april, which means the markets officially are in a construction. >> couric: but no specific catalyst for the selloff? >> reporter: no, the root of this is still the deepening debt crisis in europe and where whether that's going to spread to the united states in some form or another.
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the problem here is that that's spreading to american stocks that have interest overseas-- like boeing, g.e., alcoa. as you can see, they are hit hardest today, down 4%, 5%, and 6%. >> couric: anthony mason. as always, anthony, thanks very much. coming up next, a tough lesson in economics for america's teachers. stopping. it's not that hard. and only allstate pays you an extra bonus to do it. get one of these every six months you go without an accident. [ judy ] what are you waiting for? call or click today for a free quote or to find an allstate agent. another heart attack could be lurking, waiting to strike. a heart attack caused by a clot, one that could be fatal. but plavix helps save lives. plavix, taken with other heart medicines, goes beyond what other heart medicines do alone, to provide greater protection against heart attack or stroke and even death by helping to keep blood platelets from sticking together and forming clots. ask your doctor about plavix. protection that helps save lives.
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are disappearing. the u.s. education department says as many as 300,000 teachers could get laid off this summer. bill whitaker looks at the impact of that on tonight's "eye on education." >> reporter: 43-year-old benita scheckel has been teaching music for 11 years. she expected to teach at blair school in pasadena until retirement. >> there's just this feeling of, like, this is where i'm supposed to be. but this spring she got a pink slip, an 18% cut in state funding totaling $23 million means her job is likely to be cut. >> i don't know why, but i didn't see it coming. >> reporter: with their usual sources of funding, property taxes and state revenue dropping in this deep recession, desperate school districts are erasing hundreds of thousands of teaching jobs. every state is getting hit, that includes 36,000 teachers in chra california to lose their jobs, 20,000 in illinois, almost 17,000 in new york. so many teachers are out of work
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that districts with one or two openings are inundated with thousands of applications. >> we want to stave off an education catastrophe and the cost of inaction for our children and for our country i think is unacceptably high. >> reporter: because of all the cuts, the upcoming school year is shaping up to be one of the bleakest and most austere in 50 years with school districts cutting not just teachers but cutting programs, cutting school hours, closing schools, enlarging classrooms, all to save money. in many schools, art, music, physical education, even counseling could be history. >> what do we want? >> funding! >> when do we want it? >> now! >> reporter: across the country, teachers are protesting. many states are pressing those with jobs to give back recent pay raises. >> my members have sacrificed over and over. and we continue to do so. but we also deserve to have a living wage. >> reporter: cash-strapped states aren't budging.
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last month, a majority of new jersey voters said no to more taxes for schools and threw the problem back at the schools and the teachers. >> if they were really putting the children first, put your salary demands aside for the a year so the children don't get hurt. >> we're going to lose all of what we've tried to build if we do not value education. >> reporter: when students return in the fall, they'll face a new equation, whether fewer teachers and less money equal a quality education. bill whitaker, cbs news, los angeles. >> couric: in iran today, an emotional reunion. state television showed three young americans jail there had since last july receiving their first visitors-- their mothers. all three said they'd been treated well but they are home sick. >> it's terrible to be away from our families this long. and i... we've only received one phone call and it was five minutes long. >> reporter: their ordeal began when they went hiking in northern iraq. iranian troops accused them of crossing into iran and they were
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arrested for spying. they deny the allegations. their mothers have appealed to iran's leaders to set them free. and we'll be right back. granola nut clusters from nature valley. 100% natural nuts and granola in bite sized clusters. it's a little bit of nature... a little bit better. and nature approves. granola nut clusters from nature valley. it was tough news to hear. everything changed.
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i think it's a bad business decision to exclude anybody from your restaurant. but at the same time, i do believe in private ownership. but i think this should be absolutely no discrimination in anything that gets any public funding and that's most of what the civil rights act was about to my mind. >> couric: today in a written statement rand paul said "we should work to end all racism in american society." and later in a television interview he said he would have voted for the civil rights act of 1964. we have an update now on a story we brought you last night. a second grader asked michelle obama whether her mother, who's here illegally, would be deported. >> we have to work on that. >> reporter: today the department of homeland security told cbs news the girl's mother will not be deported. a spokesperson said the priority for deportation is "criminal aliens who pose a threat to our communities." and coming up next, art history is made by a thief.
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it happened after hours at a museum in the shadow of the eiffel tower. by morning, mark phillips reports, major works by picasso and matisse were missing. and a worldwide man hunt was on. >> reporter: the horse had long bolted by the time the police were shutting the barn door at the paris museum of modern art, examining the discarded frames of the stolen art works. it's the kind of heist for which the term brazen was invented. picasso's "the pigeon" pla's the's "pastoral" three other famous paintings by braque, modigliani and leger. estimated value if they could be sold, well over a hundred million dollars. police say the thief or thieves simply cut a padlock and broke a window to get in last night. no alarm went off, three guards inside apparently heard nothing, no leads, just speculation. >> there are thousands on the
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database. that's been recovered. >> reporter: julian radcliffe keeps tabs on stolen art from galleries and collectors worldwide. >> those who steal the art won't put them up for public sale. >> reporter: especially the stolen art is so well known. charlie hill is a transplanted american, ex-london cop who has recovered several famous stolen paintings. including munch's "the scream" lifted in a second-story job from oslo's art museum in 1994. the art theft world, hill says, is not like in the movies. >> the first thing is to put out of your mind "dr. no" or mr. mr. big." i want that petroleum brant, steal it for me. it's too risky. >> reporter: but that doesn't seem to stop them. mark phillips, cbs news, london. >> couric: that's the "cbs evening news" for tonight. i'm katie couric. thanks for watching. i'll see you tomorrow. good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by
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and tonight in your only local news at 7:00, breaking news out of southwest dc. live on this side where a mother was found dead, gary? >> reporter: derek, this is a difficult story apparently of a family who is facing their problems to overcome the child who is in need of special needs care. the story of the mother who cared for that child care, seen walking up and could be the street. and police, they are now investigating the likelihood according to neighbors that one of the children who did not have special needs. who killed her and assaulted that child with special needs. that 20-year-old child was found beneath the window of the cascade department of the 2200 block southeast this afternoon. with when they came to attend to him, finding the body

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